If you’re a fan of reality television staples The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, then you know Chris Harrison. But you might not know everything about Harrison. Did you know, for example, that he is a published romance novelist?
It’s true! Harrison’s novel The Perfect Letter was released in May, and the paperback edition was published earlier this week. Naturally, Harrison could not be more excited about this news, and he’s taken to social media to persuade you to go out and buy it.
We all know, though, that reading time is precious, and you might want to have a little bit more information before taking the author’s word at face value. To fill you in a bit more, here’s a spoiler-free rundown of everything you’ll need to know about Harrison’s novel.
1) The Perfect Letter is a love story
In case anyone was unclear about what exactly a romance novel is, Harrison explained it all in an interview on NPR’s All Things Considered last spring. “It’s romance,” he explained. “It’s love. It’s a story. It’s a journey. It’s escapism.”
2) Protagonist Leigh Merrill is caught in a love triangle
Leigh, a New York transplant, has it all — she is working as a book editor and she is engaged to a man named Joseph. But when she returns to Texan roots for a conference, she discovers a stack of letters from a former lover who make her question everything. What will she choose?
3) And Harrison is an expert on love triangles
As the host of two highly popular dating shows, Harrison is convinced that he’s the right person to be writing about love triangles. “If anyone knows something about love triangles, it’s me,” he told NPR’s Arun Rath. “I help create them, I help blow them up, so it was a very easy transition [to writing about them], shall I say.”
4) The story is a tad clichéd
The Huffington Post declared The Perfect Letter to be the “best worst book,” calling it a cross between the Nicholas Sparks novel The Notebook and the Reese Witherspoon movie Sweet Home Alabama.
5) But the love scenes are steamy
Don’t believe me? Watch this video of Harrison reading one particularly sexy passage. It includes sentences like, “For the first time since the night Jake had left for Florida, there was only the bliss of the two of them, completely alone, completely free to take their time and do whatever they wished.” And check out that smile at the end — sometimes, Harrison even impresses himself!
6) The Perfect Letter was directly inspired by Harrison’s experience on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette
To be clear, nothing in The Perfect Letter is based on actual people or events featured on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. This is not about a reality show. Still, Harrison explained on NPR, “you can’t be on and immersed [in] and produce The Bachelor and The Bachelorette for 13 years, and that immersed in love and romance, and not learn something and not take something and have it bleed over into the pages of The Perfect Letter.”
7) Lots of people are loving this book
If you think The Perfect Letter sounds like a joke, then the joke’s on you. Plenty of adoring fans are completely captivated by Harrison’s story, and they aren’t afraid to admit it.
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